Bill and I sometimes dread the Saturdays of ACL Fest, but this year wasn’t bad at all. Cloudy skies meant slighter cooler temperatures—the daytime high was only 87°F. Zilker Park was noticeably more crowded than the first day, but it was still fairly easy to walk between stages. I think this was partly due to the expanded festival footprint, but also because UT played a home football game in the evening.
A large, enclosed merchandise store was set up in the new section of this year’s festival. Entry lines were long every time we walked by the store on Friday. Everyone must have satisfied their merch cravings by Saturday evening, so I finally got in. This place sold mostly the same items as the smaller outdoor tents, but here customers could browse everything themselves in air-conditioned comfort.
The big excitement of the day was when Cut Copy’s sound was promptly shut off at 7 PM. At these big festivals, bands need to abide by the scheduled end times (I assume this is part of their contracts), but sometimes they run a minute or two over. This was the first time we’d ever seen a band get cut off at ACL Fest. A minute later, we understood why as Tom Petty’s Free Fallin’ blared over the park’s speakers. Three parachutists jumped out of a plane overhead and gently floated down over the park. One held a Texas flag and fireworks trailed the other two. Many of this weekend’s bands have played covers of Tom Petty songs, but it was pretty cool to hear a crowd of 75,000 or so singing along to Free Fallin’.
Here’s our list of bands for Saturday:
Car Seat Headrest
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